The National Pro Bono Resource Centre, responsible for encouraging and supporting pro bono work in this country, has a new director.
John Corker has great plans for the centre and has already established a strategic direction that it will follow over the next 18 months. The centre is an Australian non-profit, independent organisation that encourages and supports lawyers and legal firms in providing pro bono legal services.
Corker’s plans are expected to include an active focus on government lawyers and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander legal aid services. Also, remote and regional lawyers will join the existing focus on larger and medium sized firms and the community legal services.
“We will be looking for opportunities to facilitate meetings and do some match-making between those in need and those that have the capacity to provide pro bono assistance,” Corker said.
Law students, summer clerks and academics will also have a role in Corker’s strategy. The Centre aims to involve these groups by supporting placement programs, assisting academics to provide pro bono services, and offering input into relevant curricula.
Having started his career as a judge’s associate and then barrister in Victoria, and having spent ten years employed by the Federal Government and as general counsel for the Australian Broadcasting Authority, Corker may well find that his ambitious plans are achievable.